Tuesday, 10 November 2009
This past Sunday, The Annex Live in Toronto, was set ablaze with the sound of poetry. The event was called, The Poetry Parade, and was hosted by local Toronto poet - Desi Di Nardo and Canada's Poet Laureate - Pierre DesRuisseaux.
The venue itself had a nostalgic feel to it, quite reminiscent to that of a 60's coffeehouse, which seemed to set a distinct and necessary vibe to the evening as the more than 100 poetry enthusiasts settled into their seats.
The walls were furnished with the remarkable landscape art of Mario Ricci.
The night of entertainment then started promptly at 7pm with the sultry jazz sounds of Julie McGregor and Norm Amadio.
Pierre DesRuisseaux, then lit the match, reciting a few of his poems in both French and English, to stirring rounds of applause.
The momentum of the event continued, with impressive readings from Poets - Joe Cummings and Max Layton, both gentlemen feeding off the electricity of the room.
And then the most dazzling moments of the evening occurred, as 4 local high school students, winners of the High School Poetry Contest, sponsored by BookCity, were awarded their prizes and each read their winning poems.
This year's first place winner was, Kate Bornstein, a Grade 12 student at Rosedale Heights School for the Arts. Her poem, 'Dream Girlfriend,' spoke eloquently of a young woman discovering her sexuality.
And then, a Grade 9 student from Eastview Secondary School, Kyle MacDonald, stole the spotlight, as he confidently strided to the stage announcing to the audience, "If you don't like the poem I'm about to read, I've composed a new one on the back of the page, so just let me know." The ice was broken and he proceeded to read his second place winning poem, 'Lights Under a Bridge in Winter,' with incredible zest and ease.
Third and fourth place winners were Michelle Carter, a Grade 9 student from Rosedale Heights School for the Arts, with her poem, 'Torments,' and Lucia Bucataru, a Grade 12 student from Harbord Collegiate Institute, with her poem, 'Je suis d'un endroit.'
The evening closed with recently appointed Toronto Poet Laureate - Dionne Brand, reading two poems, one of which will be published in her forthcoming book of poetry due to be out in March 2010.
The Poetry Parade managed to set itself apart. Desi Di Nardo and Pierre DesRuisseaux, brought poetry back where it belongs, into the forefront of our thoughts and the hearts of our youth, back into the limelight for at least one November night, at The Annex Live in Toronto.
Sunday, 1 November 2009
Local Toronto poet Desi Di Nardo and Canada's Poet Laureate-Pierre DesRuisseaux will be hosting a poetry event on Sunday November 8, 2009 at 7pm. The event will take place at The Annex Live which is located at 296 Brunswick Avenue (just south of Bloor St.).
There will be poetry readings from:
Pierre DesRuisseaux (Canada's Poet Laureate)
Dionne Brand (Toronto's Poet Laureate)
Armand Garnet Ruffo
The musical entertainment will be provided by the local jazz duo of Norm Amadio and Julie McGregor.
Artist Mario Ricci will be displaying his artwork depicting Canadian landscapes.
Also, the winners of the High School Poetry Contest (sponsored by BookCity) will be announced.